Top 10 Most Dangerous Prisoners Worldwide

Not all criminals are equal. Some have committed acts so heinous or possess such a cunning mind that they strike fear into the hearts of many.
top 10 most dangerous prisoners in the world

Not all criminals are equal. Some have committed acts so heinous or possess such a cunning mind that they strike fear into the hearts of many. This list explores ten of the worldWorld’s dangerous prisoners—individuals who, for various reasons, have earned a place among the most notorious behind bars. So, be ready to delve into the chilling stories of these inmates, but be alert that some details may be disturbing.

Top 10 Most Dangerous Prisoners in the World

The world holds some truly dangerous individuals. From masterminds of terror to sadistic killers, these ten inmates have earned their notoriety for the heinous crimes.

1: Jason Barnum

Jason Barnum, aka “Eyeball,” gained notoriety for his unique appearance with a black tattooed eye on his forehead. Known as a serial burglar, he was apprehended in 2012 after a hotel standoff where he shot at police, injuring one. In 2015, Barnum received a 22-year prison sentence for attempted murder, car theft, and burglary. He attributed his crimes to fueling a substance addiction. “Eyeball” stands out not only for his criminal history but also for his unmistakable visual presence.

2: Joseph James DeAngelo

Joseph James DeAngelo, infamous as the “Golden State Killer,” terrorised California between 1974 and 1986. He committed 13 murders, over 50 sexual assaults, and around 120 burglaries. Arrested in 2018 through genetic genealogy, he pleaded guilty to 13 counts of murder and kidnapping. Formerly a police officer, DeAngelo is serving life without parole, marking a chilling chapter in criminal history.

3: Surinder Koli

Surinder Koli, a dangerous prisoner, gained notoriety in the 2005-2006 Noida child abduction cases. Alongside businessman Moninder Singh Pandher, Koli was arrested for murdering a sex worker. Shockingly, investigators discovered multiple young victims’ remains. Koli confessed to over 19 murders and faced a pending death sentence on 13 counts. Although Pandher was free of murder accusation, he received a seven-year sentence for soliciting sex workers. The case shed light on systemic negligence and the gruesome acts perpetrated by Koli.

4: Joanna Dennehy

In 2013, he committed heinous crimes in Cambridgeshire, stabbing three known men to death and attacking two random individuals who survived. Her premeditated attacks shocked the nation, as she allegedly planned to commit a total of nine murders. In custody, authorities discovered an escape plan involving biometric scans and uncovered her making death threats to fellow inmates. Dennehy’s actions earned her a reputation as one of the most dangerous prisoners.

5: Charles Cullen

Charles Cullen is an American former nurse and one of the most prolific serial killers in the United States. Active between 1987 and 2003, Cullen confessed to murdering at least 40 patients, although the actual number may be much higher. He administered lethal doses of medications in hospitals across New Jersey and Pennsylvania. However, Cullen’s motive remains unclear, and he has been serving multiple life sentences in prison since his arrest in 2003. But his case highlighted flaws in-hospital procedures and the monitoring of medical staff.

6: Robert Maudsley

Robert Maudsley, known as “Hannibal the Cannibal,” is a British serial killer convicted of murdering several men, including three in the 1970s and another in 1981. Moreover, Maudsley targeted gay men and committed gruesome acts, often involving dismemberment. But finally in 1979, he was sentenced to life in prison for attempted murder, but he continued his violent crimes while incarcerated. Maudsley gained notoriety for claiming to have eaten a part of one victim’s brain. He is currently serving life imprisonment in the UK.

7: David Berkowitz

David Berkowitz, also known as the “Son of Sam,” is an American serial killer who was very notorious in New York City in the summer of 1977. Moreover, Berkowitz targeted young couples, shooting and killing six people while injuring several others. He eluded authorities for months, taunting them with letters to the press. Berkowitz claimed that a demon-possessed dog named Sam compelled him to commit the murders. But finally, he was apprehended in 1977 and is serving a lengthy prison sentence in New York.

8: Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán

Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán is a notorious Mexican drug lord and former leader of the Sinaloa Cartel. Born in 1957, he gained infamy for his role in drug trafficking, money laundering, and organised crime. El Chapo escaped from prison twice in Mexico, in 2001 and 2015, using elaborate tunnels. He was caught in 2016 and later sent to the United States. But finally, in 2019, he was sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years for his involvement in drug trafficking and other criminal activities. Guzmán’s life has inspired books, documentaries, and TV series.

9: Charles Bronson

Charles Bronson, born Michael Gordon Peterson in 1952, is a British criminal and often known as “Britain’s most violent prisoner.” Bronson gained notoriety for his numerous prison sentences and violent behaviour. Initially caught for armed robbery, his time in prison is the record of his incidents of violence, assaults on inmates and guards, and several hostage situations.  Despite his criminal history, he has also pursued art and has become known for his unique paintings.

10: Dennis Rader

Dennis Rader, also known as the “BTK Killer”  is an American serial killer who murdered ten people between 1974 and 1991 in Kansas. Moreover, Rader taunted law enforcement and the media with letters describing the details of his crimes, leading to his eventual identification and arrest in 2004. He eluded authorities for decades while leading a seemingly normal life. But finally, in 2005, Rader was found guilty of the murders and was given ten consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole.

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Who is the most famous prisoner ever?

Nelson Mandela, the former South African president and anti-apartheid revolutionary, is widely regarded as one of the most famous prisoners ever. He spent 27 years in prison before his release in 1990.

Which is Asia’s biggest jail?

Tihar Central Jail, located in New Delhi, India, is Asia’s largest prison complex. It comprises several sub-jails and is known for its capacity and diverse inmate population.

What is the most unique jail in the world?

Prison in Norway is considered one of the most unique jails globally, emphasising humane treatment, rehabilitation, and a focus on creating a comfortable and aesthetically pleasing environment for inmates.


To sum up, the world’s 10 Most Dangerous Prisoners list highlights the frightening and diverse criminal pasts that have enabled some individuals to earn their spots on this terrible list. In addition, every case, from drug lords to serial murders, serves as an alarming reminder of the many dangers to society and the difficulties correctional institutions have in handling such dangerous people. Furthermore, the accounts of these convicts also demonstrate how crucial it is to have strong legal defence teams, efficient law enforcement, and robust prison security systems in place to shield society from the effects of their horrific deeds.